What can/should I expect from a breeder who is listed on this site?
All the breeders on this site are responsible and reputable in that they adhere to the club's Code of Ethics, Breeding Guidelines as well as the Kennel Club's Code of Ethics. Breeders listed on the site will provide you with educational information about the breed and their own experiences together with providing full support before, during and after you select and take you puppy home.
All breeders on this site will provide support and help at anytime throughout the life of your puppy.
What should I look for when I visit a breeder?
Always see the puppies with the mother. Puppies should be kept in a clean safe environment . Puppies should be bright eyed with clean coats and be curious and outgoing. They should be well socialised and used to being handled by the breeder. Expect the breeder to ask questions about yourself, your home and your family. This is to ensure you are well suited to Newfoundland ownership and understand all the responsibilities.
When I buy my puppy what should I receive from the breeder?
A full 5 generation pedigree.
The Kennel Club endorsed registration documents.
Full information pack giving details of diet, exercise, worming, vaccination and general care.
Copies of hip and elbow BVA/KC scoring schemes of both parents. Also copies of both parents' colour flow echo Doppler results and cystinuria status.
Written contract to be signed by the breeder and yourself. This will outline the responsibilities of the breeder and yourself to the lifelong care of your Newfoundland. A good breeder will help to rehome any puppy bred by them (at any age) if circumstances in its new home should change.
What health checks should a breeder have done on the parents of the puppies?
The main health checks that are required are for the parents of the puppies to have had their hips and elbows scored, their heart tested by means of an Echo Doppler and they should have been tested for cystinuria, unless one or both the parents are clear by parentage.
What is meant by Hip Scoring?
At the BVA (British Veterinary Association) a panel of experts study the X-rays of a dog's hips. These X-rays will normally have been taken either by the owner's own vet or an expert and then sent to the BVA to be scored. Each hip is given a score ranging from 0 to 53; zero being the best and 53 the worst. This means that a dog could have a total score anywhere between 0 and 106. As an example a dog could be given a score of 5/6 which would give that dog a total score of 11. The 5 is the score for the right hip and the 6 the score for the left hip. The lower the score the better, although anything above a total score of zero is still a degree of hip dysplasia.
When the X-rays are submitted these are sent together with a specific (Green) BVA form. This form is used by the BVA to details the scores of both hips. This form will be signed and stamped by the BVA prior to being returned to the dog's owner. For any dog that is owned by the breeder they should be able to show you the original form, together with a copy from the stud dog. The dogs scores under the BVA scheme are also sent to the Kennel Club.
What is meant by Elbow Scoring?
In a similar way to hip scoring a dogs elbows are X-rayed and these X-rays together with a specific (Gold) BVA Form are sbmitted to the BVA for scoring. Each elbow will be given a a score of between 0 and 3 with an Overall Grade being the worst score (max of 3). This means that a dog could have an Overall Grade of 2, where the elbows are scored, for example 0 and 2. The 0 would be for the right elbow and the 2 would be for the left elbow.
As with the hip scoring the breeder should be able to show you the original form for the dog they own, together with a copy from the stud dog. The dog's scores under the BVA scheme are also sent to the Kennel Club.
Can you explain the Heart Testing that is performed?
The primary reason for heart testing in the breed is to look for two main conditions; Sub-Aortic Stenosis and Dilated Cardiomyopathy. The breed is know to suffer from these conditions and it is believed that these can also be passed onto any puppies that they may have.
The testing is peformed by way of an Echo Doppler machine and is done by a vet that has a certificate in cardiology. The vet will look at the construction of the dog's heart as well as measure the flow of blood passing through the aortic valve. An overall assessment will be made by the vet and the dog will be assessed as having either a " Normal ", " Abnormal " or " Equivocal ".
What is Cystinuria?
This is a genetic disease of the urinary tract and can easily be screened for by way of a DNA cheek swab.
How do I ensure that the parents of my puppy have had all the correct health checks done?
You demand to see the paperwork outlined above BEFORE you commit to buying a puppy. Do not accept word of mouth or verbal promises as proof. Every breeder listed on this site will provide this written proof.
Contracts & Endorsements
Should a reputable breeder use a contract?
Yes. All reputable breeders that are listed on this site should use either a standard contract (based on a Kennel Club template) or a contract that they have created themselves.
What is meant by endorsements?
Endorsements are restrictions that the breeder specifies at the time that the litter is registered with the Kennel Club. There are two main endorsements that will appear on any puppies' registration papers:
1. Progeny not eligible for registration
2. Export pedigree not allowed
Breeders endose their stock to safeguard the dogs future, the breed and themselves.
Is a newfoundland the breed for me?
No - if you are houseproud, and like clean floors and walls and would object to water, drool and mud everywhere.
No - if you have very little space in your house or garden to accommodate such a huge dog.
No - if you would find it difficult to deal with a giant dog within your living space.
No - if you do not have the time or inclination to groom a huge double layer coat regularly and keep on top of knots and tangles.
No - if you dislike considerable amounts of exercise, ideally in the country, near or in water.
No - if you have toddlers and small children who can be flattened easily by an exuberant Newfoundland.
No - if you cannot afford the considerable expense of veterinary bills, food, dog training and running a large car.
No - if your family all work full time and will not be available to care for your dog for long periods during the day.
No - if you are not willing to devote time to proper training to ensure your young headstrong Newfoundland is not a delinquent.